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ThisWeek Column Increases SWACO’s Visibility in Central Ohio
If you receive a ThisWeek Community News newspaper at your house, then you may have seen SWACO’s new monthly column, From Waste to Resources. In cooperation with ThisWeek, we created the column to educate central Ohio residents about ways to maximize their recycling efforts. The column, which will appear each month both online and in print editions, will be authored by SWACO staff members and invite residents to ask questions about recycling and waste diversion by contacting [email protected].
Following our introductory column on September 21, we received very positive feedback as well as numerous questions from readers around central Ohio looking for more information about recycling and waste diversion. Our second column, which ran on October 18, explained how to responsibly dispose of yard waste and seasonal items like pumpkins.
Look for future columns, which are scheduled to run the second Thursday of each month.
Fall Household Hazardous Waste Collection Events Were a Success
In September, SWACO partnered with the cities of Grove City and Westerville to collect and dispose of household hazardous waste items, such as flammables, lighter fluid and paint thinners. Based on the number of participants, the events were extremely successful. A total of 535 vehicles came to the Grove City collection event, and 914 vehicles showed up at the collection event in Westerville. We received many appreciative comments about the events, including the following note from Franklin County resident D. Igo:
“It was a favorable experience, and I’m glad I took the time to go! I was thinking I’d be the only one showing up based on the weather, but the event had huge participation, and the guys working it deserve a medal!”
Thank you to everyone in the community who came out and joined us for these events and helped to properly dispose of unwanted items.
SWACO Welcomes New Board Member, Robert J. Schmidt, Jr.
In September, the SWACO board welcomed a new member. Robert Schmidt, Jr., a partner with the Environmental Practice Group at Power Wright, Morris & Arthur, LLP, joined the board. With more than 20 years of experience as an environmental attorney, Trustee Schmidt has broad experience working with clients ranging from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to large publicly owned companies to rural solid waste districts. He will be able to guide SWACO as it serves the central Ohio community with effective was reduction, recycling and disposal.
We’re excited to tell you about several new initiatives underway at SWACO. Our “Recycle Right” campaign, which aims to educate residents about the impacts of recycling and ensure they’re recycling correctly, will soon be spread all around central Ohio through a targeted advertising campaign. We also recently launched our Central Ohio Food Waste Initiative, which will utilize a collaborative, community-focused approach to develop an action plan to reduce the amount of food wasted in our communities. The initiative will involve about 40 different organizations around central Ohio and leverage their support in a way that helps our community, our residents and the environment. Read more about these initiatives later in this newsletter.
If there’s one item that cannot be recycled but is frequently tossed in recycling bins, it’s plastic bags. People mistakenly think they can put grocery bags, bread bags, dry-cleaning bags and similar bags in their at-home recycling containers. Curbside recycling programs in Franklin County cannot accept these items. Local recycling facilities don’t have the equipment to sort plastic bags, so when they’re mixed in with acceptable items, they wreak havoc on the machines, creating jams that result in extended down time and higher labor costs. Fortunately, there are ways to dispose of these bags in a responsible way. You can take them to participating “Bring Me Back” locations, including most area Kroger and Meijer stores, and simply place them in bins as you walk in to do your shopping. Find your closest Bring Me Back location here.